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4 Ways to Positively Grow in Lockdown

I'm a freelance writer who's passionate about spirituality, personal development, faith and mental health.

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It's Never a Bad Time to Grow

Current times have proven difficult to many of us, and I have found that the biggest battle for most people is staying positive and active when days are nothing but monotonous.

I've fallen victim to this very stagnant, tired mental state many times over the last months, and let me tell you it's not fun. There have been some very tough days.

However, this article isn't about the negatives of the pandemic. I'm here to talk about some methods that have helped me feel like I'm still growing, moving forward, and evolving as a human being. Progress is essential to us. We love feeling accomplished and thrive on personal success. So, let's get you un-stuck and back in the game!

Life's challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they're supposed to help you discover who you are.

— Bernice Johnson Reagon

Organise Your Day

It's a simple thing, but it has helped me tremendously. Especially when you work for yourself like I do, this is a key tool to staying sane when you're at home all the time. Here's a list of things I do to prepare myself for each day, and it works for students too!

  1. Make a day schedule. Even if it's a simple one and only has a few points, sticking to it will make you feel more organised, and therefore more in control. Adding on to that, it's good to put in some variety to make your days feel less repetitive. For example, I study Swedish every day, but I do yoga only three times a week, and I have only one designated day when I bake for my family.
  2. Include any type of physical exercise in your routine to keep the energy in your body flowing. I've found this to be the best medicine for stagnation. And I'm not talking about a full blown workout. Taking fifteen minutes each morning or afternoon to do a few calm stretches will do the trick. Muscles get used to stillness very easily, and exercising them will cause stale energy to release.
  3. Take breaks. This is crucial especially when you work/study using a computer. Every hour, take ten minutes to do anything other than looking at a screen (and yes, that includes your phone!). Walk around, lie down, do a breathing exercise. Even meditating or listening to music will make for a good change of pace.
  4. Take a walk outside. This doesn't have to be every day, but it works best on a regular basis. Breathing in fresh air will keep you healthy, and movement will help you feel more awake. If you're in quarantine though, or required to wear a mask outside, remember to take a few minutes each day to air out your home and let that oxygen in.
  5. Make an evening routine. For example, commit the last half hour before sleep to reading or listening to a calming podcast. Take a warm shower and moisturise your skin. Journalling is a great idea too, especially when you take the time to list a few things you're grateful for each day.
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"Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you have power over instead of craving control over what you don't.

— Steve Maraboli

Try Out a New Hobby or Activity

Is there anything you've always wanted to try or learn? Thanks to the vast amount of free resources available to us online, we're capable of learning many things on our own. This could be the best moment for you to finally start your journey of learning a new language. Or is baking something that has always interested you? Maybe it's time to make your kitchen a little messy?

There are many options here; some of which might be things you haven't even considered before. Ever tried growing your own plant all the way from seed? Or maybe drawing would interest you? Making your own clothes? Writing reviews for all those movies you love so much?

If you think about it hard enough, you'll find something you've always wanted to try for yourself. Use this time in your life to make a change and create new experiences.


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Start Your Spiritual Journey

I can't emphasise enough how much this has helped me in those recent months. And perhaps you have seen yourself the number of people who have started a wide variety of spiritual practises in the past year. It is in the toughest moments that we truly find ourselves, and self-inquiry is key here. So, here are a few things you can try.

  • Meditation. I've mentioned this before, but making it a regular practise has remarkable positive effects on the body and mind alike. Start with only five minutes of stillness and breath work each day, and then build up on it as you go. And, if you have difficulties with focusing, you can start out with guided meditations, which are widely available on YouTube.
  • Yoga. It's not only a great physical workout, but a form of meditation for the body too. Through yoga, you allow the energy in your body to flow unobstructed, which in turn relaxes the mind and decreases stress and anxiety.
  • Spiritual study. Reading books by gurus, monks, spiritual advisors and yogis, listening to podcasts, watching documentaries. All of it is a great way to study spirituality and discover new ways of healthy living and acquiring mental comfort.
  • Journalling. This is another thing I've mentioned before, and I have friends who have found it to be the best form of self-inquiry and healing. Write down the things you're grateful for. Practise written affirmations. Write about your feelings and experiences. Letting things out onto paper has never failed me before.

Inner stillness is the key to outer strength.

— Jared Brock

Research New Ways of Financial Gain

This is my last point, but it needed to be mentioned since there has been a huge growth in this area during the pandemic, especially among the younger generations. The number of people who have started to buy shares and invest in the stock market has risen significantly. Not to mention the huge amount of people doing freelance work of all kinds. Even things as simple as copywriting, subtitle captions, voiceovers, virtual assistance, etc. have gained on popularity.

This is a great time to do your research and find different online platforms where you can contribute your services and make a profit. You have the potential and strength to make your dreams happen, and this unique time is a great opportunity to grow in more ways than one.

So, I won't take up any more of your time. I'll simply wish you good luck with your journey, and hope that at least one of my tips will inspire you to bring even the smallest difference into your life. Take this as that sign you've been waiting for. Live well and spread love!

When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you...never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.

— Harriet Beecher Stowe

© 2021 Jordan J Harvey

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